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East Side Leaders Celebrate Business Progress

Community and business leaders from San Antonio’s East Side will bid farewell to 2014 in a busy, fun way with events meant to celebrate recent commercial progress in the area and new plans on the horizon.  The city of San Antonio Eastpoint/Promise Zone will present the “Ready, Set, Work!” job fair 9 a.m.-noon Nov. 18 at Second Baptist Church community center, 3310 E. Commerce St.  More than 50 employers will be on site, seeking candidates for entry-level and supervision positions in industries such as construction, food service, manufacturing and shipping, oil and gas, clerical, retail and hospitality. No registration is required. Refreshments will be provided, and childcare will be available. For more information about the job fair, call 418-9051 or visit bit.ly/ReadySetWorkSA.

Wheatley Court Site Plan
Wheatley Court Site Plan

Eastpoint is a 4-square-mile area including some of San Antonio’s oldest neighborhoods. The rate of economic development in the area is driven by neighborhood business owners and residents, and has been given a boost by the award of two federally funded grants, the Eastside Promise Neighborhood and the Choice Neighborhood Program.  SAGE (San Antonio for Growth on the Eastside) is helping to boost economic redevelopment on the East Side through its storefront grant program. One of its recent grant awards went to Andrew and Melissa Douglas, who moved their architecture firm, Douglas Architects, from downtown to 1320 E. Houston St.  That latter property has been getting a facelift thanks to a SAGE grant. The business owner must match SAGE grants dollar-for-dollar. Individuals and officials involved with Eastpoint are publicizing successful ventures and community projects, as well as established institutions in the neighborhood, to give them all higher visibility.

Wheatley Courts
Wheatley Courts

For example, a new newsletter gives notice to the demolition in September of the former public housing complex, Wheatley Courts, which will give way to the development of a 417-unit, mixed-income community.  A Choice Neighborhood Program grant will help to fund the new complex, which will be key to the Wheatley Transformation Plan. It’s a plan designed to help improve housing, education, employment, health care and business development throughout the East Side.  The newsletter also mentions the introduction of a glaucoma clinic operated by the University of the Incarnate Word’s Rosenberg School of Optometry. There’s also mention of the University Health System and San Antonio Housing Authority partnering to build a family health center near Interstate 35 and Walters street.

Promise Zone Map
Promise Zone Map

The new Eastpoint newsletter also touts successes and other notable news from a variety of neighborhood educational facilities, and new businesses.  The Sam Houston City Year Team will host the fourth annual Pride of the Eastside block party 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 6 at Sam Houston High School, 4635 E. Houston St.  The event is designed to be a celebration of unity, showcasing students’ creative abilities, and improving neighborhood connections.  The party will include recreation, vendors, games, information on community resources, and food.

Dignowity Meats, a new restaurant currently under construction on the East Side
Dignowity Meats, a new restaurant currently under construction on the East Side

Other notable developments on the East Side are the expansion of IDEA Carver Academy, Alamo Brewery, and Dignowity Meats.

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